Date: 31 August 2009
Thought for the day
“He who undervalues himself is justly undervalued by others.”
1)Railway minister Mamata Banerjee announced that the Duranto Express – touted as India’s first nonstop train – will begin running by the middle of next month, before the festive season. “Both the New Delhi-Sealdah and New Delhi-Pune trains are ready and will begin its run by next month before Durga Puja,” said Banerjee.
2)The full planning Commission chaired by Prime Minster Manmohan Singh, will discuss on September 1 the state of economy that is under pressure from drought and rising prices of food items. Besides chalking out the strategy to combat the impact of drought, which has already hit 252 out of about 600 districts and is likely to pull down the economic growth to about 6%, the meeting will also re view the implementation of the integrated energy policy.
CORPORATE / INDUSTRY
3)Ruias-led Essar Steel may well become the country’s largest steel producer by March next year when it commissions its Rs 13,000- crore steel mill near its existing complex Hazira in Gujarat. The new plant will take Essar’s total capacity to 10 million tonnes per annum(MTPA), making it the first company to reach this milestone in domestic production.
4)ABG Group, which has recently set up a Rs 1,650-crore shipyard at Dahej, will be putting up a 6-million tonnes cement plant near Bhuj by 2010 and foray into power generation with a 100Mw plant in Gujarat. “The cement plant is being set up near Bhuj at a cost of Rs 2,000 crore and will go on stream by end of 2010,” said ABG Group Chief Financial Officer D Datar.
5)Government-owned Oil India Ltd, which will hit the capital market with its Initial Public Offer(IPO) on September 7, is planning to offer oilfield services to third parties. OIL would be the first domes tic oil and gas explorer to diversify into providing oilfield services.
MONEY & BANKING
6)Government-owned Bank of Baroda(BoB) plans to acquire a bank in Malaysia by the middle of next year. BoB is the third public sector bank, after State Bank of India and Punjab National Bank, to flesh out acquisition plans abroad.
7)Karnataka Bank has reduced the rate of interest on domestic term deposits by 25-50 basis points on various maturities. A bank re- lease said on Saturday that the new rates would come into effect from September 1. It said that senior citizens will get 0.50 percent extra over the general rate across all maturity slabs for de- posits up to and inclusive of Rs 1 crore.
8)Indian equity indices might continue with its winning streak in the coming week, riding on the hope of global economy recovery and revival of the monsoon. Apart from that, markets will be looking at India’s gross domestic production data which is to be released in the coming week coupled with performance of the foreign institutional investors(FII). Last week, the 30-share Sensex of Bombay Stock Exchange(BSE) added 4.47% or 681.51 points and S&P CNX Nifty of National Stock Exchange(NSE) gained 4.49% or 203.55 points. On Friday, last trading day of previous week, Nifty closed at yearly high for the current calendar year. On Friday, Sensex closed at 15,922.35 points up by 141.27 points or 0.90%, while Nifty rose by 44.15 points or 0.94% to end the day at 4,732.35 points. Analysts from a leading broking house said, “Markets are likely to go in the northwards directions in the coming week. How- ever, at higher levels we might witness some profit-booking in the markets. Apart from that, weak closing of US markets on Friday might also have some adverse effect in the markets when it opens on Monday.
9)In their vigil against any share price manoeuvring, stock exchanges have served notices to more than 50 companies so far this year, seeking clarification on various price-sensitive rumours and speculative reports. Interestingly, the firms mostly term these speculations, which includes those about merger and acquisition deals or contracts, as baseless in their replies to the bourses, but most of them have eventually turned out to be true.
10)The stock market could be in for some troubles as September has been the worst month historically for the bourses. According to an analysis of the average monthly performance over the last 100 years of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the benchmark index of the US market, September has given the worst return with an average decline of 0.96 per cent. The analysis shows that over the last 100 years, September has recorded decline a majority of 58 times.
IPO / FPO
11)With improvement in the stock market, the government is looking at divesting another 10% stake in the largest power generation company NTPC, which may also raise fresh equity to part finance its expansion programme.
12)Gujarat may be a dry state but Globus Spirits is confident of a “good response” from the residents. The New Delhi-based liquor company is scheduled to open its IPO on Monday. Officials of Globus Spirits had visited the State last week to announce the IPO.
13)The pepper futures market witnessed a high volatility and all the contracts fell sharply during the week and closed much below the previous weekend closing. Indian parity is competitive at $3,150- 3,250 a tonne (c&f). The difference between the Indian prices and that of other origins is now insignificant, market sources told Business Line.
BUSINESS PROCESS OUTSOURCING
14)SEVERAL buyout funds and some strategic investors have turned their back on WNS Global Services putting the stake sale plans of Warburg Pincus in India’s second largest pure play BPO firm in limbo. Warburg wants to sell its 50.12 controlling stake in the NYSE-listed WNS.
15)THE country’s software industry body, Nasscom has proposed a new category of service visas for the US to replace the controversial H-1B visa. The service visa will enable companies to send their employees to the US on work for a certain period and will not lead to immigration or permanent residency.
16)LOOP Telecom, where the Essar Group has a stake, has shortlisted Tech Mahindra, Wipro and IBM for an IT outsourcing contract worth around $400 million. The contract is believed to be spread across a period of 10 years and will not include Loop Mobile’s operations, said two industry officials familiar with the deal.
17)Tata Consultancy Services(TCS) has bagged an order in Saudi Arabia for executing an Oracle ERP implementation project. The project will be completed within a period of two-and-a-half years in three phases ending in 2010, a press release issued said.
18)In a bid to expand its addressable market, Infosys Technologies Ltd is focused on building solutions and domain competencies to tap the sub-segments of industry verticals and horizontal service offerings. The company is targeting verticals such as retail, health- care, insurance, energy and utilities, transportation and logistics as part of its initiative to address a larger market.
19)Employers in the US probably cut jobs in August at a slower pace and manufacturing grew for the first time in more than a year, adding to evidence the worst recession since the 1930s is ending, economists said before reports this week.
20)Germany is considering offering banks e10 billion in state-backed loans to prevent a credit crunch from throttling a nascent economic recovery, according to an Economy Ministry proposal. The proposal, entitled “Options for limiting a possible credit cruch”, lists three steps for preventing tighter credit conditions from hurting German companies and the broader economy.
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Deccan Chronicle www.deccan.com
The New Indian Express www.newindpress.com